Kansas City, Mo. – Winter’s fickle weather may bring either snow or warm, sunny days to western Missouri, depending on how the winds blow. But always, waterfowl and bald eagles migrate through and use lakes and rivers as places to feed and rest. The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) will help host the 25th annual Eagle Days at Smithville Lake on Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 4 and Jan. 5.
This event is hosted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Clay County Parks and Recreation Department, MDC, and partner community conservation organizations.
Weather conditions affect the number of eagles and waterfowl using the lake during the event. In recent years, eagles were seen by visitors as the raptors fished in the spillway below the lake dam, which is a park in the city of Smithville, north of Kansas City. Spotting scopes will be set up during the event at locations where migrating eagles can be seen looking for food or resting in trees. MDC conservation agents will be among the wildlife experts answering visitor questions and helping people use the spotting scopes to see eagles.
The indoor program will be at the Paradise Pointe Golf Course Complex in Little Platte Park, 18212 Golf Course Road. Operation Wildlife will present educational programs with captive raptors. Show times are 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m., and 2 p.m. The Sunday show times are 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. Also, indoors will be nature displays by Clay County parks staff, Missouri Master Naturalists, owls on display by Lakeside Nature Center, exhibits by the Martha Lafite Thompson Nature Center, and other conservation organizations.
Directions to spotting scope locations will be available at the Paradise Pointe Golf Course Complex. For more information, visit https://short.mdc.mo.gov/ZWJ.
MDC participates in several Eagle Days events throughout Missouri. Also, some locations offer good eagle viewing during winter when weather conditions are favorable. For information about eagle viewing throughout the state, visit https://short.mdc.mo.gov/ZG7.